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5 sustainable homes are defining the way India lives beyond the metropolitans

As people are moving away from the hustle-bustle of the main cities, the paradigm shift is observed in the way they live and where they live. Sustainable homes are now an important aspect of the design plan. We found contemporary, sustainable homes in smaller, quaint cities that are welcoming the Made-in-India ideology both in terms of design and material.

The Courtyard House – Guwahati Assam

How do you lend privacy and quaintness to a home located with an industrial design? A challenge that Sustainable Architecture for Earth overcame in their project titled The Courtyard House or Aangan in Guwahati. Second-home to a family of four, the house is spread across 4,128 square feet and is centred on Indian architectural concepts and the decision to create a space in sync with nature.

All the rooms in this cottage-like home face indoors to the central courtyard; the double-height living space adds a sense of openness while the indoor plants merge beautifully with the greenery around. Sourcing material within a strict 100km radius, architect Krittika Agarwal and her team created a home rooted in tradition with local art and craft enhancing the interiors.

Cantt Farm House – Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh

Lavishness meets lush outdoors in this farmhouse designed by Lucknow-based firm 42MM Architecture for Sanjay Seth (Director Shalimar Corp Ltd. and Member of Rajya Sabha). Spread over 3 acres, the farmhouse is designed as a single storey structure but one that is camouflaged by nature. This escape from the city was built in sync with the principles of Vastu Shastra in a Balinese style of architecture — a double heightened courtyard, an indoor garden, water features. All the bathrooms come with private courtyards (screened from outside) to mimic this feeling in a lush set-up. Materials like leather finish stones, hand-carved wood, motifs and textures all allude to the idea of nature.

House – Dakivali, Maharashtra

A humble abode built by a retired school teacher/paddy farmer, this house designed by Gauri Satam and Tejesh Patil at Untag Architecture forms a connection between the neighbouring village life and the owners’ desire to be a recluse. A cost-effective home in the countryside with a contemporary vision, the house is built around the traditional champa (frangipani) tree in the central courtyard, which also lowers the temperatures. The house uses multi-functional common spaces to reduce costs. The economic support to the village economy is done by using local artisans and materials. While low-cost locally sourced concrete fly-ash block jaali act as a buffer to screen off the dust, terraces have been painted white to reduce incident heat gain and recharge pits have been introduced at key locations on-site to channelise the rainwater run-off into the ground. The home embodies ingenuity and a concern for the environment at a grassroots level.

Earthitects

If you’re looking to live amid nature, these private residences by Earthitects are sure to please your senses. Located across a forested hillside in Wayanad, Kerala is the Stone Lodges with ecologically conscious designed structures. Each private residence uses only one-third of the 26,500 square feet land area it’s located on and is inspired by the style of mountain lodges. The entire place is built with three distinct levels and made using locally sourced natural materials like wooden flooring, random-rubble walls, cobblestone pathways, log rafters, clay roof tiles, eucalyptus poles in the ceiling, custom-finish granite for counters, and stone deck floors. Each villa is hidden between the thick foliage. Architect George E.Ramapuram and his team ensure that the local fauna was never disturbed in designing these sustainable homes. Develop hobbies that bring you closer and leave the urban life in favour of community living with like-minded people. Stone Lodges is ideal for living a slow life.

Mirador – Karjat, Maharashtra

Mimicking the natural rusticity of the area is the Mirador house by Mumbai-based architecture and design firm Shroffleon headed by Kayzad Shroff and Maria Leon. Set on 3.5 acres of farmland, this two-storey structure fits beautifully. Designed in concrete and stone, the only contrast being the glass facades and columns. A central dining room differentiates the east and west wings of the home. The bed and bath suites on both ends almost dissolve the natural surrounding, and you can see the Ulhas river in the background.

Header image: Shroffleon. Featured image: Earthitects.

Akshita Nahar Jain
Sr Associate Editor
Akshita Nahar Jain has worked with various publications, including Elle, Harper’s Bazaar Bride, and Time Out Delhi, and written extensively on fashion and lifestyle. A sucker for alliteration and stylish sitcoms, she enjoys scrolling the web for less travelled destinations.